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Kettering native and Fazoli’s CEO wins national ‘Executive of the Year’ award

Carl Howard, president and CEO of Italian restaurant chain Fazoli’s and a native of Kettering, has been named the “Executive of the Year” in the food and beverage category in the 11th Annual American Business Awards.

Fazoli’s operates restaurants in Moraine, Miami Twp., Huber Heights, Sugarcreek Twp., Troy and Springfield.

All organizations, public and private, operating in the U.S. are eligible to submit nominations for the American Business Awards.

Howard, a 1983 graduate of Fairmont East High School, has led a resurgence at Fazoli’s since taking over in 2008. The restaurant chain has set company sales records and attracted new franchisees.

“Turning around a restaurant brand is a huge undertaking that requires a great team,” Howard said in a news release. “I am very honored to receive this award, but it really is a reflection of the great work done by the entire Fazoli’s management team.”

Last month, the trade publication recognized Fazoli’s as “Brand of the Year,” and the chain has been a Franchise Times magazine “Top 20 Companies to Watch.”

Fazoli’s owns or franchises 221 restaurants nationwide. Sun Capital Partners acquired Fazoli’s in 2006.

In 2010, Fazoli’s chose Dayton to test-market an enhanced-service concept in which glassware and silverware replaced plastic and paper, and servers delivered meals to guests’ tables. The concept went over so well during the test-marketing that it has been replicated at Fazoli’s locations nationwide.

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